Study Guide

The Nicomachean Ethics Book 3, Chapter 6 (1115a7-1115b7)

By Aristotle

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Book 3, Chapter 6 (1115a7-1115b7)

  • Aristotle wants to investigate each virtue. He begins with courage.
  • It is first described as a mean between fear and confidence.
  • There are things we should fear (i.e. a bad reputation, despite what Joan Jett says).
  • But then, there are things we shouldn't fear, like poverty or sickness. These things are out of our control, so there's no point in worrying about them.
  • The most frightening thing? Death. Of course.
  • It's the point past where nothing good or bad can ever happen to us again.
  • Courageous people don't fear death. It's especially noble and courageous not to fear death in war, since the danger factor is high.
  • Courageous people, then, don't fear a noble death or a sudden one.
  • They also act as manly men when they're faced with a death that isn't nobleā€¦or when they can't show off on the battlefield.

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